The land survey business is in Brian Jaquess’ blood. His father was a civil/structural engineer with a land surveying license who started his own civil engineering business in Roswell, New Mexico in the ’80s. “My first time in the field was on a Saturday morning when I was around 9 years old. My Dad needed to get a small topo survey wrapped up by Monday, so I was his rodman for the day,” remembers Jaquess, a professional surveyor of 20 years who is a licensed surveyor in California. “In high school, I worked for him in the summers on the survey crew and as a drafter, so I’ve been familiar with land surveying since I can remember.”
Familiarity with surveying is what led Jaquess to create Zia Mapper, a photo management platform for surveyors that syncs multiple devices to a common, cloud-based account.
“After moving on from Roswell and working with different surveyors and firms around the Southwest, I noticed that every engineer or designer had the same two major questions regarding site photos,” says Jaquess. “Where was the photo taken? Why was it taken?” Zia Mapper answers all of the above.
The Zia Mapper platform converts your cell phone into a GPS camera, automatically maps photos taken with the app and saves them to project folders on the cloud. The most common types of surveys land surveyors are using Zia Mapper for are topo surveys and boundary surveys.
“This creates a database of photos you captured with the app. However, you may also add to that database, by importing any image into the platform not taken with the app,” says Jaquess. Since launching the Zia Mapper platform earlier this year, it has 111 users ranging from surveyors to real estate agents.
“A good photo can document existing site conditions, show problem areas, and document the progress of a job site. They can also have ancillary uses other than purpose the photographer intended the photo for.” A picture worth a thousand words.